Posts by railsplitter

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  • AP Rewards Qana Photographers (MSM Supports the Enemy Alert)

    08/02/2006 12:25:45 PM PDT · 43 of 60
    railsplitter to sanchmo

    The man is likely where he is because it's in the shade... I can attest to seeking the shade whenever possible, over here (Iraq, and before that Afghanistan.) I'm NOT speaking about any staged aspects of the image, just the practical one. ;0)

  • Behavior will bring change to U.S. Ski Team

    02/25/2006 10:24:19 PM PST · 41 of 64
    railsplitter to Dialup Llama

    The gold medals reminded me of bagels.

  • Afghanistan more dangerous than Iraq

    02/24/2006 5:41:03 PM PST · 4 of 4
    railsplitter to jmc1969

    The fact that there are 7 times more US troops in Iraq than Afghanistan ought to mean something... after all, their populations are fairly equal (about 25,000,000 each.) What about the discrepancy in the number of civilian casualties between Iraq and Afghanistan? That's very lopsided (Iraq has far more) and it says something too. Demographics, geographics, history, politics, etc. They all play a roll, and as such, are not equal in any way between the two countries. Per capita is only one factor, and doesn't begin to tell the story.

    I spent 15 months in Afghanistan confined to an airfield, so my threat exposure was limited. I'd take Afghanistan again in a NY minute if it were the same duties. Granted, being outside the wire is a whole different ball game. Take driving a truck in Iraq vs Afghanistan. Hmmm? Pretty easy choice.

    Another dynamic is the power brokers: warlords in Afghanistan (capitalism) vs Imams in Iraq (religious fanatics.) The allied warlords are raking in the cash so they are chilled out to the max., so goes their private armies. The Imams are full of jihad, paybacks, and Allah.

    Bottom line: apples and oranges.

  • Shrine Bombing Brings Deadly Reprisals

    02/22/2006 7:18:23 PM PST · 49 of 49
    railsplitter to Dog Gone

    Good catch, as I did mean to infer an age of 1,000 years or more for the mosque.

    While in Afghanistan (04-05) I saw a modest amount of construction using local techniques that likely go back hundreds of years, if not more. Of course, how much has brick masonry techniques and materials changed (in that part of the world?)

    It's primitive yet efficient, and makes ample use of local materials (for obvious reasons) which are mud and sand (for obvious reasons. Mortar mix (cement) is used but sparingly, so that is possibly the major difference in today's techniques and past practices.

  • Shrine Bombing Brings Deadly Reprisals

    02/22/2006 2:11:00 PM PST · 37 of 49
    railsplitter to Jonah Johansen
    "I do not believe any of the last two years of wanton killing of Americans and Iraqis by the so called Insurgency would have been impossible without the tacit approval of the Sunni leadership."

    Did you mean 'possible' ?

    Your point is spot on. Just as the Shia for the most part, follow their recognized leaders, so goes the battle. Shiites Sistani and Al Sadr (to a lesser degree) have toned down the attacks on the US troops, by their influence on their followers.

  • Shrine Bombing Brings Deadly Reprisals

    02/22/2006 2:01:19 PM PST · 35 of 49
    railsplitter to huck von finn

    Yes. I only watched CNN at a diner. Sound was down. Some scrolling facts related to the mosque attack, and a couple short segments. Some questions about the attack directed to White House spokesman, SM, during a live broadcast from the WH press room. Most CNN coverage was about the UAE firm tasked with managing the 6 US ports. The usual hysteria by the press...

  • Shrine Bombing Brings Deadly Reprisals

    02/22/2006 1:51:49 PM PST · 33 of 49
    railsplitter to LeoWindhorse
    Their mortar mix 1,000 years ago was likely mud with straw or mud with lime. Weakening over time (1,000 years plus,) the intense day to day heat, etc. The confined dome likely trapped the gases which lead to the weakest link failing first (the roof) and 'vented' the energy upwards. The floor and walls deflected this pressure to the weakest link. Otherwise, the damage would have been more extensive to the walls/structure.

    Not a demo expert: Guessing 20-40 lbs of C-4 or equivalent was used. One or two men could easily carry it in under robes or pajamas or crept in with satchels or backpacks using inside help, if the dome was guarded.

    Guessing again: The confinement of the dome/structure amplified the power of the explosives. Whether the perps. understood this remains to be seen. Also, they likely placed the explosives at the intended detonation point or target, gaining maximum effect from their handy work.

    In a nutshell: Highly motivated individuals completed the mission they were tasked with. 'Bring er down.'
  • Shrine Bombing Brings Deadly Reprisals

    02/22/2006 1:27:09 PM PST · 11 of 49
    railsplitter to bayourant

    I see a lot of tit for tat, that was otherwise in check. I'm sure many Shiites are saying; "This means the gloves are coming off." Can't say I blame them... unfortunately, the Big Army has a dose of the PC contagion and will cause our troops great harm by placing them in the middle as defacto referees; (more so than what has been required of them (up to this point.)

  • Shrine Bombing Brings Deadly Reprisals

    02/22/2006 1:16:10 PM PST · 4 of 49
    railsplitter to redhawk

    I'm surprised that there haven't been more threads on FR about this rather dire (but not surprising) event. I caught a brief report during a (11:30am) lunch meal at a diner (CNN.)

  • 22nd MEU, BLT 1/2 Marines mourn the loss of three warriors (Severe Tissue Alert for Fallen Warriors)

    02/21/2006 8:53:34 PM PST · 12 of 13
    railsplitter to ASOC
  • 22nd MEU, BLT 1/2 Marines mourn the loss of three warriors (Severe Tissue Alert for Fallen Warriors)

    02/21/2006 8:52:22 PM PST · 11 of 13
    railsplitter to railsplitter
  • 22nd MEU, BLT 1/2 Marines mourn the loss of three warriors (Severe Tissue Alert for Fallen Warriors)

    02/21/2006 8:51:14 PM PST · 10 of 13
    railsplitter to ExcursionGuy84
  • 22nd MEU, BLT 1/2 Marines mourn the loss of three warriors (Severe Tissue Alert for Fallen Warriors)

    02/21/2006 8:50:15 PM PST · 9 of 13
    railsplitter to BlackVeil
  • 22nd MEU, BLT 1/2 Marines mourn the loss of three warriors (Severe Tissue Alert for Fallen Warriors)

    02/21/2006 8:49:21 PM PST · 8 of 13
    railsplitter to SandRat
  • 22nd MEU, BLT 1/2 Marines mourn the loss of three warriors (Severe Tissue Alert for Fallen Warriors)

    02/21/2006 8:29:34 PM PST · 7 of 13
    railsplitter to ASOC

    Roger taking the trash out.

    The Marines generally leave the civil affairs to the Army, and do what Marines do best; inflict maximum damage on the enemy. I was thinking about what one Marine said to me at chow: they humped ammo, water, & MRE's, (no school supplies or soccer balls.)

    I appreciate your position, awaiting your son's return.

    His service to our nation is greatly appreciated.

  • 22nd MEU, BLT 1/2 Marines mourn the loss of three warriors (Severe Tissue Alert for Fallen Warriors)

    02/21/2006 4:51:25 PM PST · 5 of 13
    railsplitter to SandRat
    I had the pleasure and distinct honor of being in the presence of this fine USMC unit while working in Kandahar, Afghanistan.

    The 22nd MEU (assigned to KAF) lost one Marine during their deployment to southern Afghanistan; Cpl Payne. On the day chosen to honor this fine US Marine, the chow hall was noticeably absent of Marines. I asked where they were, and someone said 'roll call.'

    A short time later while at my work station, 3 volleys of fire could be heard nearby. Almost immediately following the weapons report, 4 Harrier fighter jets screamed across the compound directly overhead. Knowing of this fallen Marine's fate, I kept a steady eye skyward. I was moved by what I saw next, and felt privileged to be at exactly the spot that I was at, directly underneath a missing man formation. One Marine Harrier was going vertical while the other 3 fighters tracked across the airfield's sky. I was and still do, remain ever so humbled by the implication of what I witnessed.

    And to these fallen Marines in Iraq, I am forever grateful for their ultimate sacrifice.

    In the 70 plus days that the 22ND MEU humped the ruck, during an extensive round the clock operation in southern Afghanistan, well over 100 of the enemy were treated to a dirt nap, compliments of the USMC's 22ND MEU.

    This former Army dog says HOOYAH and Semper Fi!
  • Global Hawk UAV welcomed home after three-year deployment

    02/21/2006 4:24:39 PM PST · 15 of 21
    railsplitter to Brujo

    Global Hawk, which has a wingspan of 116 feet (35.3 meters) and is 44 feet (13.4 meters) long, can range as far as 12,000 nautical miles, at altitudes up to 65,000 feet (19,812 meters), flying at speeds approaching 340 knots (about 400 mph) for as long as 35 hours. During a typical mission, the aircraft can fly 1,200 miles to an area of interest and remain on station for 24 hours. Its cloud-penetrating, Synthetic Aperture Radar/Ground Moving Target Indicator, electro-optical and infrared sensors can image an area the size of Illinois (40,000 nautical square miles) in just 24 hours. Through satellite and ground systems, the imagery can be relayed in near-real-time to battlefield commanders.

    When fully-fueled for flight, Global Hawk weighs approximately 25,600 pounds (11,612 kilograms). More than half the UAV's components are constructed of lightweight, high-strength composite materials, including its wings, wing fairings, empennage, engine cover, engine intake and three radomes. Its main fuselage is standard aluminum, semi-monocoque construction.

    The principal contractors for Global Hawk are:


    Northrop Grumman's Ryan Aeronautical Center, San Diego, Calif. -- prime contractor
    Raytheon Systems Company units at Falls Church, Va., and El Segundo, Calif. -- ground segment and sensors
    Rolls-Royce Allison, Indianapolis, Ind. -- turbofan engine
    Vought Aircraft Company, Dallas, Texas. -- carbon-fiber wing
    L3 Com, Salt Lake City, Utah -- communications systems
    Global Hawk is one of two UAVs currently under development and acquisition by ASC. The second UAV is Predator, a medium-altitude (25,000 feet) vehicle used by U.S. forces in Bosnia and Operation Allied Force in Kosovo, Yugoslavia and is also supporting Operation Enduring Freedom. The Predator has entered the formal Air Force defense acquisition process.

  • Northern Spotted Owl Demography

    02/20/2006 9:57:21 PM PST · 5 of 29
    railsplitter to restornu

    The barred owl is fond of the tasty spotted owl and is suspected of being the primary predator of said owls, not the logging industry, which up to now, has received most of the blame. I believe the latest edition of Outdoor Life or Field and Stream carries such a report.

  • Lawrence O'Donnell Suggests That VP Cheney was Drunk

    02/14/2006 8:44:47 PM PST · 139 of 185
    railsplitter to PeaceBeWithYou
    Good catch... we're getting the case tossed out of court and saving our VP seven bucks!

    Behold- the weapon in question. A 12, 16, 20 & 28 gauge collection will set one back a cool $400,000.

  • Lawrence O'Donnell Suggests That VP Cheney was Drunk

    02/14/2006 8:15:14 PM PST · 128 of 185
    railsplitter to gondramB
    This is the stamp requirement that was violated by VP Cheney. However, I failed to link sec. 43.652 with it.

    Hunting Stamp Endorsements Effective September 1, 2005, the turkey, white-winged dove, and waterfowl stamp endorsements will be replaced by an upland game bird stamp endorsement and a migratory game bird stamp endorsement.

    SPECIAL NOTE: No STATE stamp endorsement is required for anyone under 17 years of age (resident or non-resident), holders of Lifetime Resident Combination, or Lifetime Resident Hunting Licenses.

    Archery Stamp Endorsement (Type 135): $7 Required to hunt deer or turkey during an Archery-Only open season.

    Texas Migratory Game Bird Stamp Endorsement (Type 168): $7 Required to hunt any migratory game bird (waterfowl, coot, rail, gallinule, snipe, dove, sandhill crane, and woodcock). A valid Federal Duck Stamp and HIP Certification are also required of waterfowl hunters 16 years of age or older.

    Upland Game Bird Stamp Endorsement (Type 167): $7 Required to hunt turkey, pheasant, quail, lesser prairie chicken, or chachalaca. Non-residents who purchase the Non-resident Spring Turkey License are exempt from this stamp endorsement requirement. May not be used to hunt turkey with Non-resident Special Hunting License (Type 107) or Non-resident 5-Day Special Hunting License (Type 157).

    Federal Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation Stamp ("Duck Stamp"): $15 Required for all waterfowl hunters 16 years of age or older; available at most U.S. Post Offices, all TPWD Law Enforcement offices, and Austin HQ. The stamp must be signed on its face by the person using it. A valid hunting license, HIP Certification, and a valid Texas Migratory Game Bird Stamp fee are also required.